What separates Central and South Jersey?


A historical viewpoint

The discussion above New Jersey’s geography has been all around for hundreds of years.

Before the European colonization that resulted in the demise and displacement of numerous Indigenous people today, the Lenni Lenape lived in the area for hundreds of several years. And, according to a record of New Jersey’s “civil boundaries” from the state’s Geological Study, the Lenni Lenape experienced a few divisions: “the Minsi (or Munsee), or ‘people of the stony country’ in northern Jersey Unami, or ‘people down the river’ in central Jersey and Unalachtigo, or ‘people who live in close proximity to the ocean’ in south Jersey.” The regions just about every division lived in also encompassed a great deal of what would afterwards become Pennsylvania, and northeastern Delaware.

During colonial moments, in 1676, the province was divided in two: East Jersey exterior of modern day-day New York and West Jersey outside the house of Philadelphia, in a deal struck concerning Quaker settlers of the west (which include William Penn) and George Carteret of the east.

To visualize the border amongst the two Jerseys, think about a line from Small Egg Harbor in Ocean County up to the idea of Sussex County, stated Dr. Maxine Lurie, professor emerita at Seton Hall University. Lurie has edited numerous textbooks on New Jersey’s historical past, which include an atlas.

“The dividing line is at an angle, so east-west,” she reported. “But if you glimpse at a map and consider north-south — none of it’s straight — but that was the massive division.”

Infighting among the proprietors of the provinces, the men and women who lived there, and the British authorities eventually led to the two Jerseys turning into one particular once more.

“Rebellion and violence against authority became so in depth that the East and West Jersey Proprietors jointly gave up their appropriate to govern to Queen Anne of England on April 15, 1702,” reads the New Jersey Geological Survey’s history. “East and West Jersey were reunited and the governor of New York turned governor of the royal province of New Jersey until finally 1738 when Lewis Morris turned New Jersey’s individual governor.”

Lurie mentioned the orientation ultimately improved from east-west to north-south. Anecdotally, she herself seen a transform just after she and her spouse moved to Piscataway 4 decades ago.

“We live incredibly close to Route 18, and the indicators on Route 18 mentioned east and west,” she explained. “At some level, they altered them to north and south.”

The people declare their territory

Now that we have reviewed the record, and we know what state laws and the governor tell us, what do the folks say?

In Bordentown, just inside the official South Jersey border in Burlington County, some citizens, like Marletta Welch, really don’t automatically agree with that classification.

“I’d say Central Jersey is from Exit 7 to Exit 9 and then it goes north or south,” said Welch. That covers a about 30-mile stretch of highway from U.S. Route 206 in Bordentown Township to Condition Route 18 in East Brunswick.

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